Class intended to make you smile

Artists express their emotions through their work, according to Reiko Hervin, who recalls her life experiences that have affected her own drawing and painting.

Hervin, 45, of Wellington, decided to share her techniques, as well as her thoughts about artistic expression, with others in a series of watercolor painting classes.

Painting - Makes You Smile is an intermediate watercolor class she is offering this Thursday and on Feb. 23, at the Cooperative Extension across from Lampe Park. More classes will be offered by Hervin in the future.

"I had to experience the unexpected death of my father two years ago when my son and I visited Japan," said Hervin. "We hadn't been there for five years. I didn't know he was ill and he was in the hospital. It was emotionally a very difficult time.

"I couldn't paint for a while ... I didn't feel like doing anything. But my fall class started and I had to get up and do something for my class. After I started to hold the paint brush again, painting helped me concentrate, live in the present moment, forget about the sad memory that happened a few months ago."

Hervin has been teaching drawing and watercolor classes for six years, and during her classes she said they "forget everyday life for 2 1/2 hours and have a great time."

"I think artists' work has strong relations with their lives," said Hervin. "As artists what can we do?

"Many of the artists express their emotions - anger, sadness, frustrations - through the colors. There are a lot of paintings out there that artists created during a stage in their lives.

"Can we take this one step more? Can we create a painting more positive and pleasant, give encouragement to make them smile? This idea led me to do this class theme, Painting - Makes You Smile. As artists, we paint from the heart, I feel it's one of the important things we keep in our minds."

"This theme is for you and me," said Hervin. "This is the theme for somebody you love. We have the power for helping to heal from the pain. We'll never forget the pain that we had to go through, but our paintings make you smile, make us smile."

For more information about Hervin's classes and artwork, call her through the East Fork Gallery, 782-7629, personal contact is 465-1163 or by e-mail, Samples of her artwork can be seen at the East Fork Gallery or online


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